Midseason Farrell 50: Countdown of top players begins with Nos. 46-50
The midseason Farrell 50 is here, my list of the top 50 players in college football and I can say that this season has been like no other so far. Here’s Nos. 46-50.
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50. WR Jameson Williams, Alabama
The skinny: Williams trimmed his list of top schools to Ohio State, Alabama, Nebraska, Oregon and UCLA before committing to the Buckeyes during his senior season. After struggling to find his place in Columbus, Williams transferred to Alabama earlier this year. In his first season with the Tide, he has quickly established himself as one of the top offensive weapons on the team.
Now with 29 receptions for 587 yards and six touchdowns, he has established an impressive connection with quarterback Bryce Young. Aside from his offensive accomplishment, Williams has also returned two kickoffs for touchdowns this season.
Farrell’s take: An argument can be made for Williams to be much higher on this list and he continues to impress. He always had that speed out of high school but he’s taken it to a new level in the SEC.
49. WR Wan’Dale Robinson, Kentucky
The skinny: Robinson had a national list of offers and saw a strong push from Alabama, Ohio State and Purdue. However, his recruitment came down to Kentucky and Nebraska, with him surprisingly committing to the local Wildcats during his senior season. But that commitment lasted only a month before he flipped to Nebraska. However, after two seasons in Lincoln, he then transferred to his home-state Wildcats. In his first season in Lexington, Robinson has 49 receptions for 566 yards and five touchdowns, plus five carries for 84 yards.
Farrell’s take: Another transfer like Williams, Robinson has been a huge key for the Kentucky offense and his ability to move around the line of scrimmage keeps everyone off balance.
48. RB Sean Tucker, Syracuse
The skinny: Tucker committed to Syracuse during the spring after his junior season, over offers from Rutgers, Air Force and Kent State. He was also recruited as a defensive back by several schools. After a promising true freshman season with the Orange, Tucker has become one of the top backs in the country this fall with 948 yards and nine touchdowns, while averaging 6.1 yards per carry. He has also been explosive as a receiver, with 14 receptions for 224 yards and two touchdowns.
Farrell’s take: Tucker doesn’t get the attention he deserves at Syracuse but he’s one of the best running backs in the country. He was a pure athlete coming out of high school who could have played receiver or defensive back as well.
47. QB CJ Stroud, Ohio State
The skinny: Stroud committed to Ohio State over Georgia, Michigan, Oregon, USC and others on the early National Signing Day even though the Buckeyes didn’t offer until late in the process. In his first season as a starter, Stroud experienced some struggles at the early part of the season, but has found his stride in Columbus in recent weeks. Now with 1,699 yards, 18 touchdowns and only three interceptions, his improved play has Ohio State fans excited for the remainder of the season.
Farrell’s take: Stroud blew up late in his recruiting process and is emerging slowly this season as he gets comfortable with all his weapons at Ohio State. His mechanics are still being tweaked and he should rise on this list.
46. RB Chris Rodriguez Jr., Kentucky
The skinny: Rodriguez committed to Kentucky during the summer leading up to his senior season. He also seriously considered Ole Miss, Mississippi State and North Carolina. In Lexington, Rodriguez has quietly become one of the more productive backs in the SEC over the last couple of seasons. In 2021 he is having his best season to date, with 774 yards and six touchdowns, as well as two receiving touchdowns, for the surprising Wildcats.
Farrell’s take: Rodriguez Jr. is one of the unsung heroes in the country and a huge reason why Kentucky was undefeated heading into the Georgia game. He’s a physical runner who makes plays after contact.